According to New Humanist, the outcome of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation’s film contest didn’t quite come out the way Tony would like it:
The Tony Blair Faith Foundation held their awards for their Faith Shorts film competition on Monday, and of the three prize winners two were atheists. We’re quick to jump on the TB Foundation when they promote faith guff so we should make a point of saying well done when they don’t.
The event was pretty starry by all accounts – with a video message from Hugh Jackman (sporting rather nice Wolverine sideburns) and speeches from TB and Jimmy Wales (who you may know from such fund raising messages as ‘give Wikipedia $5′). You can see for yourself if you want.
Of the two “atheist films” our favourite is the winner of the 18-27 category, Death Bed the Musical, the charming stop-motion animation musical by 25-year old Israeli Liat Har-Gil (below). [JAC: I've added the full version rather than the shortened one given by New Humanist. It's still only about 6 minutes long.]
The synopsis from Vimeo:
An old man sits in a nursing home, waiting to die. A devoutly religious man, he firmly believes he will receive his due reward in the afterlife. While reflecting on his own virtues and thinking of the world to come, a woman enters. He believes her to be an angel only to realize that she is in fact a nurse, nearing the end of a long, arduous shift, brings his breakfast. The old man sees his mistake and sings to her. The nurse, too tired to play in to his song, starts to leave. The old man stops her while not realizing that he amuses her with his ideas of the afterlife and god. An argument about faith vs. atheism develops between the two, in song.
I think it’s pretty good.
And New Humanist’s report:
Accepting her prize Liat said: “I myself am not a religious person but I believe that promoting an understanding between different religions is very important and should be celebrated. I am grateful that the Foundation understood the message of my movie: the dangers of religious intolerance”.
Also worth a look is The Mirror, by 15-year-old Mudit Muraka from New Delhi, who won the Face to Faith category of the Faith Shorts film competition.